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Science briefs: July 23
Posted: Wed, Jul 24, 2002, 7:21 AM ET (1121 GMT)
  • Dwarf galaxies may be the source of much of the oxygen and other heavy elements that shaped the formation of larger galaxies, according to research publicized by NASA on Tuesday. The weak gravity of dwarf galaxies, relative to larger galaxies, allows oxygen and other elements created by supernova explosions to easily escape into intergalactic space. Such phenomena in the early universe may have allowed clouds of gas to cool more quickly, speeding up the formation of larger galaxies.
  • A newly-discovered asteroid will pass relatively close to the Earth next month. Asteroid 2002 NY40 will pass within 530,000 km of the Earth, slightly farther away from the Earth, on August 18. The close flyby by the asteroid, estimated to be about 500 meters across, should allow it to be seen by small telescopes and even binoculars.
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